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Mental Health: Keeping Mentally Fit

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Mental Health: Keeping Mentally Fit

Published 1952

The four steps in acquiring, maintaining and improving mental health: express emotions naturally, respect yourself, respect others, and solve problems as they arise.

Run time 12:04
Producer Encyclopaedia Britannica Films
Sponsor N/A
Audio/Visual Sd, C



Ken Smith: This film is narrated by prune-faced "Dr. Martinson," who relives vignettes of mildly-troubled high schoolers and spouts assertions such as "there's no room for bashfulness in good mental health." Jess Pugh formerly starred as "Scattergood Baines" on Chicago radio.
VS speaker in front of outdoor audience (high school graduation ceremony)
VS man throwing football, man shooting rifle
Amusement park midway scenes:
Shot of 3 candles as 2nd flame goes out, kids waving at rollercoaster
MCU spinning Ferris wheel with riders
MCU boy in suburban neighborhood, cutting grass with hand lawnmower by fire hydrant

Young family at dinner table
MCU Old doctor listening to boy breathe with stethoscope
Boy begins to cry when doctor asks him if he is OK
Doctor gives Tommy a Kleenex for his tears
Family together at night; Tommy says goodnight
Cut to shot of Tommy graduating, kids receiving diplomas

Bruce playing tennis, group of kids on sidelines, Bruce throws down racket in anger and frustration, coach walks over

Group of kids, talking, laughing

Girl drops her books, Otto picks them up for her and walks away.
CU Older woman's face
Otto in older woman's office, his head slung down a little, woman is bent towards him talking
Doctor talking with Otto's parents
Back to graduation scene, everyone stands up
VS of people shaking hands

MCU classroom, students rise, 2 girls talking at door
CU Nancy (procrastinator) sitting in anguish at school desk

VS Tommy saying goodnight to parents, man raking, boy playing tennis, people shaking hands, woman writing on chalkboard, girl sitting on couch, boy in doctor's office, boy in teacher's office

Danger Lurks MENTAL HEALTH PROBLEMS ANGER CHILDREN TEENAGERS ADOLESCENTS FAMILIES BEHAVIOR PARENTS DOCTORS HIGH SCHOOLS GRADUATION CEREMONIES AUDIENCES DIPLOMAS Mental health Health and hygiene Children Doctors Physicians Lawnmowers Suburbia High schools (graduations) Graduations Ceremonies Students Self-esteem Anger Depression Teachers safety


Reviewer: noisepuppet - favoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - July 31, 2008
Subject: Don't lose your mind, kids!
He forgot some important ones, like:

--when in doubt, pretend it's not happening
--never show weakness
--get them before they get you
--a stranger is just a jerk who hasn't screwed you yet
--there's no point in trying

But overall this video is full of good old-fashioned sanity!
Reviewer: Karma Hawk - favoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - March 30, 2005
Subject: good mental film.
This film about how to keep mentally fit is good and really could probobly still be used today. Another reviewer mentioned something about the film makers putting too much of a personal agenda into it, personally I didn't see it that way at all. An old country doctor narrates this peace and tells the audience about his various patients, it's a good setup and keeps the audience intrested untill the end.
Reviewer: Film Fan - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - May 30, 2004
Subject: Sound Advice from the Kindly Doc
It seems that too many people have put too much of their own agenda into this film. This isn't psychotherapy. These people don't live in a Stepford community. Kids are not advised to blab everything to their parents.

The Doc's kind and respectful advice is well worth listening to. This film discusses the most common techniques in fending off what could become larger emotional issues...issues children still face today.

Watch this film and see if you don't draw parallels to Columbine. I did. True, the film is brief and generic. But, it was meant to be a concise presentation in a classroom setting with discussion to follow. If the issues of bottling up emotions, self respect, respect for others, and immediate (and positive) resolution of problems had been brought out in the open through this film and discussed, could Columbine have been averted?

Food for thought...
Reviewer: Marysz - favoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - May 8, 2004
Subject: Quick Fixes for Mental Health
As the camera pans over a high school graduation ceremony, a small town doctor tells us how two of the students will end up in mental hospitals. Only two? It didnt take much to be classified mentally ill in those days. Fortunately for the three boys and one girl profiled, their problems can be easily solved with one of the doctors adages: dont bottle up your feelings, respect yourself and others, and if you have a problem do something about it. The high school we see hasnt been affect by the baby boom yet. The graduation ceremony is small and unpretentious. The classrooms arent overcrowded. The teachers have time to take an interest in their students and talk to them in private. And the Doctor in the film is long gone. For some people though, the best way to prevent mental illness is not to live in a small, conformist town like the one in this film.
Reviewer: Spuzz - favoritefavoritefavorite - November 9, 2003
Subject: "My parents are trying to sell me off to the highest bidder!"
EB films can fall into 2 categories. The boring ones, and the loopy ones. This is one of the loopy ones when a small town doctor watches a graduation going on and sums it all up for us, 2 of these grads will wind up in a mental institution! And further goes around the bend when he states that the best way to stay out of the looney bin is to not keep your emotions bottled up! Wow, interesting theory! Anyways, get more friends! Stop thinking that your the best! No! Your parents don't want to get rid of you! Stop Thae blubbering! All too ridiculous. The doctor should REALLY worry about the way the guy is playing tennis...
Reviewer: Christine Hennig - favoritefavoritefavorite - November 11, 2002
Subject: Mental Health
A kindly old country doctor tells us the Four Commandments of Mental Health (1. Don't bottle up your emotions; 2. Respect your abilities, i.e. don't be a perfectionist; 3. Respect other people, i.e. fit in; and 4. Attend to problems immediately, i.e. don't be a procrastinator), and violates the rules of confidentiality by illustrating his rules with detailed case studies of local teenagers. Of course, all these teenagers have problems as complex and difficult as the characters of "Leave It to Beaver," and they are solved in even less than 30 minutes. No wonder they need only a country doctor to provide them with mental health services. This "average town" is an HMO's dream. And the rules, though seeming reasonable on the face of it, actually amount to the usual parental anxiety-based control stuff when you scratch the surface of the examples used to illustrate them. "Don't bottle up your emotions" really amounts to "tell your parents everything you are thinking." "Respect your abilities" really amounts to "don't show obvious signs of frustration if you don't get what you want." "Respect other people" really amounts to "fit in, be like everybody else, conform." And "attend to problems immediately" amounts to "do what you're told in a timely fashion." But maybe the film is really trying to promote the mental health of parents. A very white-bread, innocent film.
Ratings: Camp/Humor Value: ***. Weirdness: ***. Historical Interest: ****. Overall Rating: ***. Also available on Campy Classroom Classics, Vol. 2.
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